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What To Serve With Pork Belly – 21 Delicious Side Dishes

If you’re wondering what to serve with your pork belly, you’ve come to the right place.

In this article, I list 21 of the most popular side dishes for pork belly.

In a rush? Here’s the short answer.

The best dishes to serve with pork belly are light and acidic options such as German red cabbage, broccoli slaw, or apple and fennel salad. Richer side dish options include homemade ramen, butternut squash risotto, or celeriac puree. For some fun side dishes, try bao buns or fruit kabobs. 

Ready? Let’s jump right in.

Quick homemade ramen 

This recipe elevates your humble instant ramen by ditching the seasoning packet and using fresh ingredients. 

Adding fresh ginger, garlic, and dried mushrooms to your chicken broth will give you a stock that’s bursting at the seams with flavor. 

Top your ramen with slices of pork belly and indulge in the ultimate comfort meal.

Don’t forget the soft-boiled egg!

You only need 25 minutes to get this quick homemade ramen from your kitchen to the table.

Bao buns

If you’re making Chinese-style barbecue pork belly (char siu), having some bao buns on the side is a no-brainer. 

They go great with crispy pork belly too.

Stuff the buns with your pork belly and slithers of carrots, cucumber, and cilanto. Plus a sauce of your choosing (siracha mayo is good). 

You can easily make these basic steamed bao buns at home (even if you’re not a baker).

Broccoli honeycrisp slaw

Add a fresh bite to your pork belly dish with a serving of this special slaw. 

You won’t see any cabbages or carrots in this – but don’t worry. 

It’s still crisp and refreshing, with a tangy dressing and some sweetness from apples and dried currants. 

This broccoli honeycrisp slaw keeps well in the fridge, but I doubt you’ll have leftovers!

Psst… a creamy coleslaw would work really well too.

Mashed cauliflower

Pork belly pairs superbly with mashed potatoes, but if you want to avoid the extra calories, make mashed cauliflower instead.

It’s still got the lovely creaminss that pairs well with the pork.

And a good tip to avoid the dreaded watery mash is to heat the cauliflowers as you mash them.

This will allow all the excess water to evaporate. 

This mashed cauliflower is guaranteed to curb your carb cravings.

Warm German potato salad

Getting bored with creamy potato salads?

Set aside the classics and try this warm potato salad. 

Its dressing is made with bacon grease, vinegar, and mustard – so it packs a flavorful punch!

And the smokey bacon ties the dish together with its pork belly cousin.

Make your next potluck more interesting with this warm German potato salad.

Baby arugula and strawberry salad

Who can resist strawberries?!

Salad is a great summer accompaniment to a fatty dish like crackling pork belly. 

And the bitter, sweet, and sour notes of this salad, together with the meaty pork belly, will give you a harmony of flavors in every bite. 

You’re in for a real treat with this baby arugula and strawberry salad with feta.

Mushroom and scallion rice noodles

You can’t go wrong with serving slices of your crispy pork belly on a bed of these delicious noodles. 

It’s a one-pan wonder that only takes 20 minutes to come together.

And the noodles are chock full of umami goodness thanks to the mushrooms and the sweet-but-spicy Asian sauce.  

These mushroom and scallion rice noodles are a great last-minute dish for busy weeknights.

Pssst… Add some bok choy or baby corn if you want extra veggies.

Kimchi-jeon

Whether you’re making Korean-style pork belly or the typical fried version, you can’t go wrong serving it alongside kimchi-jeon. 

This dish is everything you love about kimchi, but in a crispy pancake form. 

Load your kimchi pancake with slices of pork belly for a deliciously satisfying meal. 

And if you want to go the extra mile, make a gochujang mayo for dipping. 

Kimchijeon is highly addictive – good thing it’s easy to make!

Spinach mac and cheese

This classic pasta dish is rich and creamy, with a little nutrient boost from adding spinach. 

Add some pork belly and you have a warming meal that will put a smile on everyone’s faces.

The crunchy pork belly skin will add a nice texture to the meal.  

But be warned, this spinach mac and cheese is pretty rich, so schedule time for a nap after this meal.

Apple and fennel salad

There’s no greater pair than apple and pork belly – the acidity of the apple cuts through the rich pork brilliantly. 

The apple normally comes in the form of an apple sauce.

But this apple salad is a lighter, healthier alternative. 

You can serve it on the side, or mix the pork belly into the salad – it’s up to you. 

Chelsea tops her salad with some nuts for crunch, and some salty parmesan.

Egg fried rice

Upgrade from plain steamed rice with this egg fried rice. 

It will transport you right back to your favorite chinese restaurant!

This takeaway-style egg fried rice recipe doesn’t have any vegetables in it, but I like to add peas and sweetcorn for some color.

You can also make a quick soy vinegar dipping sauce to complete the meal. 

Stir-fried pea shoots

Complete your dinner spread by making these stir-fried pea shoots to go with your pork belly.

Pea shoots have a naturally sweet taste that goes nicely with savory dishes. 

The shoots are flash-fried in garlic oil at high heat, so you need to keep a close eye on them to prevent any overcooking.

These Chinese stir-fried pea shoots are delightfully simple and tasty.  And if you can’t find pea shoots, baby spinach is a good substitute.

Thai green papaya salad

Take culinary inspiration from Thailand with this salad.

It’s the perfect blend of sweet, sour, and spicy. Just looking at it will make your guests mouth water. 

Serve Whisk Affair’s salad with some pork belly for an instagram-worthy dish!

You should be able to fine green papaya at your local Asian supermarket, but if you need a substitute, try mango, apple, or carrot.

Pineapple and watermelon skewers

Looking for a fun side dish for your pork belly?

These pineapple and watermelon kabobs are perfect.

They’re unique and bring loads of color to the mix. They don’t fall short on flavor either. 

The sweet, citrusy notes from the fruit will balance the rich, salty flavors from the duck without weighing the dish down.

You could even add pieces of pork belly to the skewers.

Pan-seared cod in tomato sauce

Are you a fan of surf and turf? 

Pan-seared cod and pork belly might seem like an unconventional pairing, but the fattiness of your pork belly is a great complement to the lean meat of your cod. 

And the white wine tomato sauce perfectly rounds out this dish.  

This pan-seared cod in tomato and white wine sauce is going to be a mainstay on your weekly menu.

Spaghetti aglio e olio

Aglio e olio is probably the easiest pasta dish you can make, but that doesn’t mean it’s boring. 

Far from it. 

The pasta is coated in a garlicky sauce, with a hint of heat from some chili flakes.

Add some pork belly and you have an amazing dish – one I wouldn’t be surprised to see on a restaurant menu it’s that good!

This spaghetti aglio e olio may look plain, but looks can be deceiving.

Goose fat roast potatoes

Want to turn your pork belly into a roast?

Serve it with some decadent roast potatoes on the side.

Goose fat gives your potatoes an ultra-crispy outside, and keeps the inside extra fluffy. Plus it will complement the similarly fatty pork belly.

Serve the whole thing with a tart apple sauce or some pickles to make sure it doesn’t end up being too rich.

Bok choy and shiitake stir fry 

Make your pork belly shine with a serving of this stir fry on the side. 

The subtle Asian, earthy flavors will mesh well with the pork belly without overwhelming it.

Don’t cook this bok choy and shiitake mushroom stir fry for too long or you’ll lose the crunch. And no-one wants floppy vegetables.

Quick-pickled radish

Add a refreshing splash of pink to your pork belly with this pickled radish. 

It’s a no-cook dish that only takes 10 minutes hand-on-prep. But you do need to let the radish sit in the pickling juice for an hour so they can develop their signature tangy flavor. 

These quick-pickled radishes will add a lip-puckering bite to your meal, cleaning your palete of the fatty pork belly.

Butternut squash risotto

Welcome in Autumn with this butternut squash risotto. 

Pork belly is a rich meat, so you either need something light and acidic to pair with it. Or something that can match up to its indulgent flavors.

Butternut squash risotto is the latter. It’s warm and comforting and will leave everyone at the table satisfied.

Head over to delish for the tastiest butternut squash risotto you’ll ever have.

Celeriac puree 

Celeriac is one of my favorite vegetables, but I don’t use it enough. 

It has a very distinct, nutty taste that will enhance the savory flavors of the pork belly. 

This velvety celeriac puree is super smooth, and fancy enough for a dinner party. 

And if you want to add a bit of a kick to the puree, stir in some horseradish.

The best side dishes for pork belly

  • Quick homemade ramen
  • Bao buns
  • Broccoli honeycrisp slaw
  • Mashed cauliflower
  • Warm German potato salad
  • Baby arugula and strawberry salad
  • Mushroom and scallion rice noodles
  • Kimchi-jeon
  • Spinach mac and cheese
  • Apple and fennel salad
  • Egg fried rice
  • Stir-fried pea shoots
  • Thai green papaya salad
  • Pineapple and watermelon skewers
  • Pan-seared cod in tomato sauce
  • Spaghetti aglio e olio
  • Goose fat roast potatoes
  • Bok choy and shiitake stir fry
  • Quick-pickled radish
  • Butternut squash risotto
  • Celeriac puree

What To Serve With Pork Belly

In this short recipe, I show you exactly what to serve with your pork belly.
5 from 1 vote
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Course: Side Dish
Cuisine: All
Keyword: pork belly side dishes, what to serve with pork belly
Prep Time: 0 minutes
Cook Time: 15 minutes
Total Time: 15 minutes
Servings: 1 person
Calories: 518kcal

Ingredients

  • 1 portion pork belly

Instructions

  • Prepare your pork belly according to your favorite recipe.
  • In the meantime, choose one of the following sides to serve alongside it.
  • Side dishes include: quick homemade ramen, bao buns, broccoli honeycrisp slaw, mashed cauliflower, warm german potato salad, baby arugula and strawberry salad, mushroom and scallion rice noodles, kimchi-jeon, spinach mac and cheese, apple and fennel salad, egg fried rice, stir-fried pea shoots, Thai green papaya salad, pineapple and watermelon skewers, pan-seared cod in tomato sauce, spaghetti aglio e olio, goose fat roast potatoes, bok choy and shiitake stir fry, quick-pickled radish, butternut squash risotto, and celeriac puree.
  • Serve immediately and enjoy!

Nutrition

Serving: 100g | Calories: 518kcal

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